My experience and the experience of other tax lawyers I know tells me that the IRS is ramping up criminal prosecutions. This was strictly anecdotal evidence, however. Chatter amongst lawyers.
Now we see some statistics (as well as word out of the IRS) that this is true. Criminal tax prosecutions are at a 4 year high. The numbers? In 1991 there were 871 cases authorized for prosecution; in 2004, we have seen 1,381 cases authorized for prosecution. That’s a 58 percent increase. Source of the statistic: Ted Cronin, associate chief counsel and division counsel for criminal tax, who talked about this at a November 3, 2004 meeting in Washington DC, sponsored by the ABA, on criminal tax fraud.
I’d like to see the statistics for the Central District of California (i.e., Los Angeles and environs) and see how aggressive the IRS is around here.